What is the state of China’s Social Credit System


The NATO Strategic Communications Center of Excellence in Riga published an overview of Dr Gulizar Haciyakupoglu’s extensive analysis, which focused on the Social Credit System (SCS) being developed in China.

Based on written materials and interviews with experts, Dr. Haciyakupoglu analyzed the current state of the Social Credit System as well as possible future developments.

He wanted to find answers to the questions of how far SCS is from a smoothly functioning, complete and perfect system; what is the role of data and monitoring activities in the operation of the SCS and what impact can the SCS have outside China.

Dr Haciyakupoglu points out in his analysis that the SCS is not yet a smooth system, but rather an evolving process that seeks to integrate the various parts of the SCS from the private sector, municipalities and the state.

When describing the data and the role of monitoring, the author of the analysis tries to go through all the related details, ie data storage and analysis, their sharing, privacy conditions, security and finally the monitoring activities as such.

The topic of data is one of the most exciting parts of the analysis. For example, it describes how the exchange of data within the SCS between different areas, such as the private sector and the state, takes place or could at least take place. How national data from the Social Credit System is used for commercial purposes, or how information is transferred from the private sector to the state about detections of violations of the law by commercial companies, but also, for example, how social credit information is shared more generally with different parties.

Looking at the use of SCS outside China, several experts have pointed to the risk that technically capable authoritarian states may start to emulate the capabilities of the SCS system. However, the author of the analysis considers that an exact copy of the SCS by other countries is unlikely.

Photo: screenshot of the summary